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The Role of Contribution among Defendants in Private Antitrust Litigation

  • Morten Hviid


    (School of Law and Centre for Competition Policy, University of East Anglia)

  • Andrei Medvedev


    (Centre for Competition Policy, University of East Anglia)

To date the experience of the incidence of private actions for damages in antitrust cases has differed markedly across jurisdictions. The procedural rules surrounding private litigation may account for some of these differences. This paper explores the effect of rules concerning contribution among multiple defendants who are joint and severally liable for a cartel infringement. The no-contribution rule is shown to lead to higher levels of aggregate damages and more information revelation to the private plaintiff. However, the no-contribution rule also has the potential to neuter any public leniency programme, thereby possibly reducing the number of cartels detected.

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Paper provided by Centre for Competition Policy, University of East Anglia in its series Working Papers with number 08-3.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ccp:wpaper:wp08-03
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  1. Klerman, Daniel, 1996. "Settling Multidefendant Lawsuits: The Advantage of Conditional Setoff Rules," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25(2), pages 445-62, June.
  2. Feessa, Eberhard & Muehlheusser, Gerd, 2000. "Settling multidefendant lawsuits under incomplete information," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 295-313, June.
  3. Aubert, C├ęcile & Rey, Patrick & Kovacic, William E., 2006. "The impact of leniency and whistle-blowing programs on cartels," Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine 123456789/13637, Paris Dauphine University.
  4. Massimo Motta & Michele Polo, . "Leniency Programs and Cartel Prosecution," Working Papers 150, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  5. Spagnolo, Giancarlo, 2004. "Divide et Impera: Optimal Leniency Programmes," CEPR Discussion Papers 4840, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Easterbrook, Frank H & Landes, William M & Posner, Richard A, 1980. "Contribution among Antitrust Defendants: A Legal and Economic Analysis," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 23(2), pages 331-70, October.
  7. Jeong-Yoo Kim & Joon Song, 2007. "Signal Jamming in Pretrial Negotiation with Multiple Defendants," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 91(2), pages 177-200, June.
  8. Joseph E. Harrington, 2008. "OPTIMAL CORPORATE LENIENCY PROGRAMS -super-* ," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 56(2), pages 215-246, 06.
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